To answer this question let us go back to the beginning AD 32. Christ ascended to heaven, Acts 1:9 and the doors of the church were opened, Acts 2:32. This was the beginning of the New Testament Church. And to promote the growth of this early church special gifts were given by God, speaking in tongues, prophecies knowledge etc.
These gifts allowed the gospel to be understood, develop and increase the spreading of the church. It was the vehicle necessary for the early church before the New Testament could be written (put together).
But it didn’t stay true it gradually apostatized. If it would have stayed true to its original form we wouldn’t have had the misleading consequences brought on by the first culprit the Roman Catholic church and the second one in the 16th century the Reformation movement and of course it perpetuated into the thousands of unscriptural churches spread around the world today.
Matthew 7:15-16 foretold to beware of false prophets.
Paul the apostle wrote in 1 Timothy 4:1-3.
- Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
- Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
- Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.
This early church founded by God and developing by the special gifts flourished and when the New Testament had been put together by the end of the first century or into the beginning of the second the special gifts weren’t needed anymore, because the New Testament had been written (put together).
Slowly as this church gradually departed from the truth new changes occurred, centuries later and progressing it finally developed into the Roman Catholic Church around the 6th century. Then interrupted by the Reformation movement in the 16th century it competed with the likes of Martin Luther, John Calvin and others trying to reform the Catholic church, but it only resulted in forming more unscriptural churches.
This developing of churches founded and not by New Testament teachings set a precedent that fostered into the thousands and thousands of Christian oriented churches through out the world. Read the Reformation article for much more detail.
Churches can break up and a new one established by many means for example, A preacher can elaborate on a scripture leading a congregation falsely away in a different direction and someone that’s fairly charismatic finding objections into what is being taught, he influences others in the congregation and creates a following. The church or congregation refusing to change leads to a break up and a new church forming.
What’s happened over the years and centuries is These first churches which came out of the Reformation has spread and divided (branched off into other churches) and settled into countries around the world.
An example of the spread of the Catholic Church. The Roman Catholic church spread its roots into Mexico down over the land bridge with its countries into and over South America. This came about gradually as beginning in the 16th century The conquistadors some fifty or more fighting men from Spain who plundered vast parts of South America for their gold and other valuables, history records it was then shipped back to Spain.
Some time after this violation of occupants of this land Spanish settlers came and settled in this vast land bringing with them their customs and their Catholic religion which became dominant. The only main Christian religion at the time, the Catholic religion eventually spread around the world.
Catholicism controlled Spain and other parts of Europe up and into the 16th century, but the Reformation introduced churches with different names and beliefs. Being familiar with the United States these churches soon found their way hear including the Catholic church. The Catholic Church has millions of members in its grip here in the U.S. and many prominent citizen in the public eye have let it be known they’re Catholic.